By Amy Roady, Illinois Soybean Association, Membership Committee Co-Chair
Each year one of my favorite parts of Commodity Classic is getting to connect with my fellow AAEA- the Ag Communicators Network members. I always treasure those opportunities to talk about what’s happening in our industry and what’s happening in our lives. Plus, it’s fun to see everyone in action, learn about the stories they are working on, the people they are meeting and the questions readers and members are asking. It’s what gets me excited about being an ACN member.
This spring I’m also excited about a couple different opportunities that are coming up for members. The first is AAEA’s 100th anniversary. It’s exciting to see how much our industry has changed and yet how valuable our efforts remain in keeping the ag community informed.
The second thing I’m excited about the regional workshop in Chicago on April 24. Julie Deering and I have been working to bring something new to our members that tackles the challenges and future opportunities we face as communicators and the evolution of the ag communications industry. I’m excited to learn more from experts in our field. Plus, Chicago is one of my favorite cities to visit. If you are looking for tips on what to do, where to eat, places to visit, or the best running routes, let me know. (Hint: there are great options for all of these close to our hotel.)
The regional workshop is also a great event to invite new or potential members to. It’s always more fun to learn when we are surrounded by friends and people who share our passion. Plus, think about the stories you can capture along the way.
Speaking of passion, if you know communicators in your state who are passionate about journalism and agricultural communications, ask them if they are interested in becoming a member. We encourage you to take advantage of local events where communicators are present and talk about joining AAEA-ACN. Now is a great time to join with the upcoming awards program, regional workshop and Ag Media Summit this summer. And if you need help spreading the word, we have membership materials that you can print out and use. Sometimes it’s as simple as asking someone to join and sharing your passion for this organization with them.